Sad desk lunch? Not on my watch. Whether you occupy a cubicle, breakroom, teacher’s lounge, seat behind the wheel or work-from-home-standing-and-staring-into-the-fridge zone, I’m here to solve your lunchtime dilemmas. Because at Red Stick Spice, if there’s one thing we take very, very seriously, it’s this: Mealtime.
At Red Stick Spice Company, we pride ourselves on being good listeners. When you visit (or type) we are all ears (and eyes and typing fingers.) We lean in, and we hear you. We’re here to help you re-invigorate Taco Tuesday, brainstorm grab-and-go breakfasts and get those picky eaters bellying up to the dinner table. But when you tell us drive-thru is the only way or convenience store burrito nuking is easier or you don’t have time for lunch box packing, we say: Nope. Not hearing it. Now, grab that lunchbox (and jars and reusable containers,) and let’s pack your lunch!
If your work breakroom (or kitchen for you work-from-home peeps) is well-equipped with a blender, put it to work. Load up a jar with the ingredients for this delicious Peach Smoothie with Turmeric and Cinnamon. Pop it in the freezer the night before, then pop it in your lunchbox the next morning. By the time lunchtime rolls around, it will be just the right consistency for blitzing in the blender. If you need a more satiating smoothie, add in protein powder, Greek yogurt or tofu. Give it a whirl, pour back in the jar, add a straw and bask in the turmeric-tinted satisfaction of not sitting in the drive-thru line.
Speaking of jars, I love these little workhorses. From shaking up our Rosemary Peach Vinaigrette to sipping soups, re-usable jars are where it’s at. Prep this totally-customizable and completely-delicious Schichimi Togarashi Ramen Jar and watch your co-workers marvel at your creativity, intelligence and general greatness. A few minutes in the microwave, and you’ll have a warm, veggie-packed soup that’s packed, heated and consumed all from the same jar. Brilliant.
While they look a lot like a salad with grains and garnishes, they’re so much better when you say “Grain Bowls.” Trust us. We did the research, and our findings say that you should make a Grain Bowl for lunch at least once a week. Prep and pack is easy: cook up a big pot of grains on Sunday—we love farro and barley, but quinoa, brown rice or freekeh will fit the bill. Then check out our Plant Based Power Street Bowl or our Lime and Garlic Shrimp Grain Bowl for inspiration. You can layer the grain bowl in a jar—dressing at the bottom, then grains and protein with veggies and garnishes at the top. You can also arrange it all in a bowl. Don’t fret too much about separating all the ingredients, just be sure to use hearty greens like spinach, kale and romaine lettuce. With these, you’ll still have lots of crunchy goodness at lunchtime.
Got the turkey sandwich blues? Cheer up your sammy with these delectable sauces and spreads. We love these make-ahead condiments for their versatility. Use our Romesco Sauce in place of mayo and mustard, but it’s also delish on grilled shrimp or fish. This Alabama Sauce is a must for our slow-cooker Pulled Chicken Sliders. We also love this sauce as a sandwich spread, a salad dressing and dip. Get that hot chile endorphin rush from this Korean Dipping Sauce—another great multi-tasking condiment. We love it on lettuce wraps (a great lunchbox choice, btw,) but go ahead and dip that turkey sandwich in it. Yum!
Listen up! Give that lunchbox a place on honor on your desk. Leave the flavor to us, and we promise the rest is easy and so worth it.
Let’s do lunch!
The night before vacation.
The last day of school.
All things that give us all the oh-so-good, anticipation feels. But there’s nothing like the anticipation of the first college football game kickoff. And that season is upon us!
Here in Baton Rouge, we are all about the LSU football experience. While Tiger football feels like the only event happening on earth at that moment, I know that from Philly to Pasedena, folks are celebrating college in stadiums and living rooms across the country. Home or away, no matter who you root for, whether you’re shouting “Geaux Tigers” or “Hotty Toddy” or Wooooo Pig Sooie,” college football is cause for celebration!
When it comes to away games, before you head out to a crowded bar, consider hosting a football watch party. Now, if fretting about a clean house or décor details or food perfection is your thing, I invite you to stop. Immediately. I return, once again, to these wise words from our friend Holly Clegg: “People are excited to be invited to your home.” Truth. Believe it.
Now that we’ve got worries crossed off your list, let’s plan your party! I’ve put together an almost-completely-prepared-the-day-before menu that will have your guests swooning over your hostess-ing skills and asking for the recipes.
To start, toast the start of the season with this Berry Blast Sparkler. Both sparkling water or bubbly work in this fun cocktail (or mocktail) so that everyone on your guest list can imbibe. The dark berry color pairs perfectly with our Blueberry Sugar and a wedge of lemon (for those of us sporting the purple and gold.) But no matter your team colors, steep a big batch of Berry Blast Tea, add bubbles and say “Cheers!”
Set out a bowl of this Smoky Hot Pimiento Cheese and pop open a jar of Cochon Cannery’s Bacon Jam. Crackers, crudité or crostini—they all fit the bill and make the perfect vessel for this delectable pair. Make the Pimiento cheese the day before so that all the flavors marry. Go heavy handed on the Smoked Hot Paprika and Cayenne—you won’t be sorry. The sweetness from the Bacon Jam helps tame the heat.
D’Agostino Pasta + Veggies + Italian Herbs Olive Oil + Lemon Balsamic = Feed-a-Crowd Happiness. Put this Lemon Herb Pasta Salad on your day-before list so that the flavor develops and the goodness grows. Get creative with the veggies. We love the addition of asparagus and peas. Roasted leeks and corn are pretty amazing here as well. Be sure to have extra Italian Herbs Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Lemon Balsamic Vinegar on hand to add to the salad just before serving.
Hot Wings? Yes, please. Our Hops & Honey Wings feed a crowd and keep them coming back for more. Dry brining is the key here. Toss the wings in our Hops & Honey blend and allow them to chill overnight, uncovered in the cool air of the fridge. The result? Crispy, oven-baked wings with crazy-delicious crunch and flavor.
Looking for a dipping sauce? Look no further than our cool, creamy Tzatziki—another make-the-day-before gem.
Pull out your fourth-quarter sneak play with this Sunday Supper Chocolate Cake. Rich milk chocolate flavor is coaxed along with the addition of both Chocolate and Vanilla Extracts. Make a layer cake with two rounds or pour the batter in a 9X13 pan for a one-layer wonder. Top with a little hand-whipped Chantilly cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Either way, you can guess the result. First, raise both arms over your head. Now yell: TOUCHDOWN!
Anxiety. Embarrassment. Shame. These are a few of my least favorite things. But when you have IBD--like my son Clay who was diagnosed with Crohn's disease in 2016--these feelings are commonplace. Building awareness and understanding of Crohn's & Colitis is my main focus as President of the Louisiana-Mississippi Foundation Chapter.
Love. Support. Understanding. That's the order of the day at Camp Oasis--Crohn's & Colitis Foundation's summer camp. Camp Oasis is a co-ed camp dedicated to providing a safe and supportive environment for kids with IBD. Kids are surrounded by fellow campmates and counselors who truly understand them. It was an honor to be part of this effort to provide a place for kids with IBD to receive complete acceptance and solace.
Fun. Fun. Fun. From high ropes to zip lining to "the blob," there were nothing but smiles. The activity schedule was non stop as was the campers' energy. My time at camp was spent teaching cooking classes for older campers. We cooked up Mediterranean meatballs, quick marinara and protein power bites--with zero leftovers. An all-camp cabin cookie challenge wrapped up my culinary adventure at Camp Oasis. And I can't wait to return next year. Take a look at this extraordinary place...
Gorgeous setting in the Texas hills
Baton Rouge Take Steps Walk Honored Hero Chad just hanging out
Our favorite KPLC Meteorologist Ben Terry and a fellow counselor readying their game faces for color wars
Joshua & Grady, Counselors from our New Orleans chapter
Prepped & ready to make Power Bites (campers' favorite)
Zoodler. Locked and loaded.
Cookie Challenge time
All hands in for the cookie challenge
Proud to stand alongside camp directors Alicia Barron and Barry Vignon
Team Louisiana Campers & Counselors. I loved being part of this group.
See you in 2019 Camp Oasis!